the Palestinian Center for Development and Media Freedoms (MADA) in collaboration with department of culture and information/PLO rapped up a workshop on access to information in Palestine, that lasted two days in participation of 20 employees of the PLO, as a continuation to all previous efforts on the right to access information in Palestine, funded by the representative office of Finland in Ramallah.
This workshop is of particular importance as it raised awareness and highlight the importance of this right, as a preparatory step towards the enactment of the law before the end of the year as pledged by Dr. Rami Hamdallah (Prime Minister), Mr. Ali Abu Diak (Minister of Justice).
Workshop sessions were led by trainer Mr. Majed Arouri; a media specialist and legal researcher; Mr. Arouri addressed different aspects of access to information and the protection of right to privacy, moreover, he focused on the right to access information as stipulated by international conventions and emphasized enacting a law that conforms to Palestine’s ratification of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, and the significant role of all sectors in this regard.
Mr. Haidar Awadallah; senior general director of culture and information department/PLO and Mousa Rimawi, General Director of MADA Center, had kicked off the workshop with an opening note; on behalf of PLO/ executive Committee member Dr. Hanan Ashrawi, Mr. Awadallah praised MADA’s efforts in this regard, reaffirming the importance of future collaboration to planning and organizing further training workshops, indicating that the department is exerting a concerted effort in this aspect and is working on the preparation of a series of educational and raising awareness training for its staff in order to strengthen, develop and build their capacities.
Mr. Rimawi, also welcomed all participants, and recounted MADA’s different programs and activities that aims at promoting freedom of expression and the development of Palestinian media. He also emphasized the importance of enacting the law on right to access information, which would benefit the Palestinian’s society as a necessary step to strengthening freedom of expression and media in Palestine.
On her side Mrs. Samya Wazwaz; director of local media – department of culture and information/PLO, also organized in all logistics related to the workshop stressed the need for a final draft of the law that aligns with international standards, she also pointed out the importance of strengthening public awareness on the right to access information, describing it being at the top of the pyramid when it comes to Human rights and freedoms.
Lastly, all participants expressed their complete contentment, of the training and how valuable it was, they also assured the importance of enacting a law in this regard, additionally they demanded for more training courses and workshops to build their capacities, certificates were presented to all participants.